The Cambsdance organisers have sought to facilitate a return to in person organised classes as soon as it was allowed. The rules and guidance have often been hard to follow, and slow in coming which has made it hard to plan, but we are at a stage now where we feel we can offer indoor, in-person classes again from 21 May 2021.
We have strived to both ensure we are compliant to the new laws (the fines for breaching the rules are considerable) and ensure the session are as safe as possible whilst aiming to provide an experience that still feels something like we so cherished pre- March 2020.
Due to the reduced air circulation & therefore increased exhaled particles exercising indoors is no-doubt a higher risk activity than exercising outdoors, which is why it has only just been allowed in Step 3 of the Government’s Roadmap post 17.5.21. There are legal guidelines and rules that now apply to ‘indoor group exercise classes’ (that we have been categorised as) and we have incorporated them into the new rules and way we will be running the sessions.
Its important you understand what measures we have in place to comply with the law and to together try and keep you and our wider community safe. Also so you clearly understand the rules you are expected to follow. All individuals take full responsibility for deciding whether they should attend a session or not, and assess how much risk they feel comfortable exposing themselves to.
Participants should follow UK Government guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19 if it applies to them www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19 The government are at the time of writing (18.5.21) advising clinically extremely vulnerable people to continue to take extra precautions to protect themselves.
If you experience COVID-19 symptoms or have a positive Lateral Flow self-test you should self-isolate immediately (along with all members of your household) and get a ‘PCR test’ (the one that’s sent off to the lab) www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test If its positive the Test & Trace system will work with you to track who you’ve been in contact with and the places you have recently visited. You also need to self-isolate if you have had contact with someone with COVID-19. www.gov.uk/guidance/nhs-test-and-trace-how-it-works#how-nhs-test-and-trace-works
We are operating in a rapidly changing environment and so ask your patience with us as we do our best to keep everyone safe and still offer a beautiful experience.
Our Friday evening classes will be until further notice once again in person only events and there won’t be a Zoom link to the class so it remains a contained space. (Of course, if restrictions tighten again we may be pushed back online.)
We welcome your feedback and suggestions on how to make the sessions better and indeed if there are any additional rules or changes to the current ones that you would like to see. Since we have to balance so many factors we cannot promise that we will implement them, but we would love to know what would make you feel more comfortable attending or have a more enjoyable experience.
Details of sessions:
Venue – St Pauls Church, Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 1JP – main hall downstairs
Timings – arrive between 7.45-7.55pm, for class start prompt at 8pm. (Doors will close and no entry after 8pm.) Class ends at 9.30pm & everyone leaves by 9.45pm.
We cannot hang out in the foyer/building before or after the dance.
Pre-booking & pre-payment essential – Only people with pre-booked tickets will be allowed in.
At booking, along with paying you will have to provide your name & telephone number for the Test & Trace system. Cambsdance will keep details of all class attendees in line with GDPR and provide all data to NHS Test and Trace if requested. By booking your ticket you confirm you have read, understood, and will comply to the event’s rules.
Rules (applies to all attendees – teachers, crew and dancers):
- Before you arrive: You are asked on the day of your booked class to take a ‘Rapid lateral flow test’ (freely available – maps.test-and-trace.nhs.uk/ ) to check if you have Covid (it is not 100% accurate but is the best test we have available to us). If you, or anyone you live with have any of the symptoms (a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste) or a positive test result please stay at home, self-isolate and do not attend the class. We are not going to ask for proof this is complied with but trust you care for your fellow dancers as we do.
- Refunds policy – If you cannot attend because you are concerned you have Covid we will refund your ticket price. In general, refunds will not be given but will be looked at on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the organisers, and credit towards another class may be offered. Please note tickets are non-transferable – i.e. do not pass your tickets to anyone else to come in you place & do not book for anyone else who has not fully read and agreed all the rules. (This is so we can ensure we have the correct details for attendees for Test & Trace and ensure compliance with the rules.)
- On arrival remember to queue in a socially distanced manner, show your ticket & go straight into the main hall. Please arrive changed and ready to begin the class. Remember to bring your own water.
- There will be a maximum of 18 people in the sessions – this number includes the teacher, crew and dancers.
- Social distancing is in place – you should keep yourself 2 meters away from everyone whilst in the class. To help with that you will have a 2mx2m marked out square in which to dance within. Each square is 2 metres from any other square meaning you can use all your space without concern of encroaching into another’s space.
Teachers at their discretion at specific points may make invitations for dancers to move between squares (whilst maintaining social distancing in these transitions) but these invitations are entirely voluntary, and you can stay in your one square all class if you prefer.
(Before the class whilst wearing masks you are asked to maintain 2m from each other.) These rules apply to all, even if you are in a bubble or the same household as another dancer present.
- Masks must be worn whilst approaching and coming through the venue. Once you have settled yourself to start in your 2mx2m space you can take your mask off. At the end of the class you must replace your mask again to leave the venue.
- Masks during class: masks are not required or advised to be worn during the class, see links and guidance below for further details and advice. If unsure speak to your GP.
- Shouting, using a raised voice or singing is not allowed at any time whilst in the venue due to the increased production of air particles.
- Hand sanitiser is available throughout the venue, but please bring your own also. You are asked to use it frequently but at least – just before you enter the building, once you’ve entered the hall and also as you leave the class.
- Failure to comply with the rules during the sessions will result in warnings and then being asked to leave immediately.
- The floor – Dancers are asked to be aware that although the floor is cleaned just prior to the class there can be no guarantee of its cleanliness and so there is an increased risk of transmission through touching the floor – please note the class just before ours is a yoga class where hands would have potentially touched the floor. Therefore, dancers are advised to use hand sanitizer regularly and not to touch face especially if they touch the floor or any surface during the session.
- If you start to develop any Covid symptoms during a class, immediately put on your mask, notify an organiser and take yourself outside if possible.
References re. advice on mask wearing during exercise:
“There are also scenarios when you are permitted to remove a face covering:
…if you are undertaking exercise or an activity and it would negatively impact your ability to do so”
“Face coverings for sport facilities
People are not required to wear face coverings while taking part in sport and physical activity. All forms of face coverings may restrict breathing efficiency and should not be used during exercise except on specific advice from a physician.”
“Masks should not be worn during the class but replaced when leaving the class.”